Mid-Day Recap: S&P at Highest Level Since November

by devteam July 20th, 2009 | Share

Markets opened higher Monday morning following a five-day rally in the major indexes last week. The S&P 500 has now gained 39.5% since early March, pushing the index to its highest level since November.

Three hours into the Monday session the S&P 500 is trading 0.75% higher at 947, while the Dow has climbed 0.81% to 8814, and the NASDAQ is up 0.83% to 1902.

Sending markets higher is the overnight news that business lender CIT Group has secured a $3 billion loan from bondholders, enough to stave off bankruptcy. The financial institution, which received $2.3 billion of government aid last year, is expected to make an official announcement later today.

LEI Beats Consensus: The only data release today was the slightly better than anticipated Leading Indicators Index. The broad composite jumped 0.7% in June, following a 1.3% leap in May. Three months of improvement in the index are supporting hopes that the economy, while remaining in recession, could be slowly recovering.

“The economy is expected to stabilize this quarter, showing a flat reading on output, and to grow 1% next quarter, producing the first positive on real GDP since Q2 2008,” said Deutsche Bank’s Joseph LaVorgna following the release.

Goldman Sachs Lifts Forecast for S&P 500. The nation’s 5th largest bank lifted its forecast for the benchmark index, predicting that it will see the biggest second-half rally since 1982.

This Week: Earnings are expected to play a greater role than fresh data. Almost a quarter of the S&P 500 companies are reporting Q2 earnings this week, including American Express, Boeing, Caterpillar, and Merck & Co. Markets will also see earnings from Amazon, Apple, Coca-Cola, eBay, PepsiCo. and Starbucks.

No more data releases are on the schedule for today, but at 1:30 Dennis Lockhart, President of the Atlanta Fed, will speak on the economic outlook in Nashville, Tennessee. 

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About the Author


Steven A Feinberg (@CPAsteve) of Appletree Business Services LLC, is a PASBA member accountant located in Londonderry, New Hampshire.

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